|#||Release title||Total tracks||Type of release is||Imprint date||Label|
|1||Tarzan Of The Apes||11||Audio||2009||Trakwerx|
In the past 17 years since the last official 17 Pygmies release, Philip Drucker (aka Jackson Del Rey) has seen quite a few changes in his life. Fascinated (and horrified) by the sad tale of how he lost control of most of his early copyrights, he first began to read about Copyright law, then found himself informally helping other musicians with their quasi-legal problems, and eventually went to law school, passed the California bar (first try!) and now practices intellectual property law. Additionally, Drucker, Esq. also teaches basic business and business law at a prestigious private institute to aspiring photographers and filmmakers.
As part of his desire to again record music, Jack (as his friends call him) wanted to not only make a musical statement, but a statement that included utilizing some of his knowledge attained during his years of studying and practicing copyright law. Mostly, Jack has a keen interest in the public domain, and the public’s constitutional right to “recycle” other person’s copywritten works when in fact said protection expires. To this end, he chose to include many pieces now in the public domain as inspiration for the 2007 17 Pygmies double CD titled 13 Blackbirds/13 Lotus, released on his fledgling record label, Trakwerx. Compositions such as “Bye Bye Blackbird” (written in 1925) and “Going Up Yonder” (traditional gospel) as well as “found sounds” from “free (aka royalty free) sites” and even sound bites distributed under “alternative” licensing agreements, such as creative commons and free sound project, were used as well.
The mix, well, is an eclectic brew of cross-cultural somewhat pop-oriented sound collages that are fortunately held together by what loosely passes as “song structure.” (You know, chorus…verse… chorus…verse…solo…bridge …chorus…verse…out…although some of the choruses’ and bridges are missing…) All in all a project that uses both acoustic and electronic mediums fair indiscriminately in order to attain what Jack jokingly refers to as “a moderately successful stalemate” between the artist and his chosen medium (in this instance, music.)
Jackson Del Rey also has released new CD/DVD soundtracks to the classic films “Battleship Potemkin” & “Nosferatu” (another nod to the relevancy of the public domain) under the name Del Rey & The Sun Kings, which also happens to be the name of the first band (a frat party bad that played 50’s covers) he ever played guitar in (that’s where he got the stage name Del Rey by the way…). He is currently working on the score to the original silent film version of “Tarzan” (yet another PD film) which should be complete in late 2008, and will probably be released under the name Jackson Del Rey due to the fact that this is primarily a solo effort. He has invited the 17 Pygmies to participate in the only vocal song written for the end of the film, however.
Not one to rest on his laurels, Drucker released yet another 17 Pygmies CD (aka The 17th Pygmy) “Ballade Of Tristram’s Last Harping” (November 2007, Trakwerx), a tribute to ‘60s Pyschedelia and ‘70s Classic Rock. The newest 17 Pygmies release “Celestina” (September 2008, Trakwerx), drawing from influences as diverse as A Saucerful of Secrets era Pink Floyd, Space Oddity era David Bowie, This Mortal Coil as well as film composers Jerry Goldsmith and Bernard Herrmann, seamlessly welds classical film scores and ‘60s era psychedelia with 4AD style vocals to create a simultaneously beautiful and haunting universe of musical splendor.
For his next act, Jackson has jokingly talked about becoming a profiler and hunting down serial killers like his hero, Dayle Hinman. At all other times, he lives quietly at home with his two dogs, Starsky & Hutch, and likes to go for long walks on the beach.